A soft, comfortable plaid is the personification of home comfort and warmth, a stylish and interesting home decoration. It is nice to wrap yourself up in it on cold winter evenings, plunging into an atmosphere of peace, serenity and romance. And on the road and on picnics, you can’t do without such a useful accessory. In this article, we will talk about how to choose the right blanket.
But we will start with the history of plaids, which has more than one hundred years. In 18th century Scotland, they were used as a piece of clothing, then as a travel blanket. Nowadays, blankets decorate apartments and country houses, warm and cheer up. The popularity of the accessory is difficult to overestimate. In stores and online stores, there is simply a huge assortment of blankets of different sizes and colors. The buyer will have to thoroughly break his head to decide on the material and choose the right blanket.
Types of blankets
Depending on the purpose, blankets are divided into several types:
Homemade blankets are mini-quilts or bedspreads. They take shelter in cold weather, cover beds or sofas. Blankets look especially elegant and stylish, elegantly hanging from comfortable chairs, emphasizing the design of the room and beckoning into their arms. In a homemade blanket, the main thing is warmth, softness and beauty.
Travel blankets are simply indispensable when traveling. They will always warm and remind you of home. It is important that the travel blanket is made of high-quality material that does not absorb dust and odors, stays clean for a long time, is easy to wash and folds compactly.
Picnic blankets are an indispensable attribute of a comfortable outdoor recreation. They are simply necessary in country houses to comfortably accommodate guests on the veranda or in the garden. A picnic blanket should be especially dense, durable and warm.
Baby blankets are a great replacement for old scratchy blankets. But a children’s blanket is not only covered. You can also lay it on the floor for a child during games, take it with you on a trip. Plaids for children are always distinguished by special softness and environmental safety. Bright drawings of children’s blankets attract the attention of children, give them a lot of positive emotions.
Choosing a blanket material
The choice of a blanket is primarily the choice of material, which depends on the purpose of the purchase and your personal preferences. For the home, woolen or fur options are more suitable, for the road or giving — easy-care acrylic, for allergy sufferers it is better to stay on cotton, bamboo or synthetics, which are so easy to wash and dry quickly. Some people like fluffy blankets, some people like smooth ones, some people like knitted ones. In any case, before buying, you should figure out what materials blankets are generally made of, what advantages and disadvantages you need to know about so as not to make a mistake in choosing.
To begin with, it is worth saying that all blankets are divided into synthetic, natural and mixed.
Natural ones include fur, woolen, cotton, silk and bamboo blankets. Their undoubted advantage is excellent breathing ability, i.e. they perfectly pass air and take away excess moisture. To the disadvantages — natural materials are clearly more difficult to care for than artificial ones, and wool can cause allergies.
For synthetic blankets — acrylic, fleece, polyester. It’s the opposite here — breathability is lower, strength is higher, care is easier.
Mixed compositions can combine a variety of materials, most often cotton or wool with other natural or artificial fibers. These blankets successfully combine the advantages of their materials.
All synthetic blankets are distinguished by brightness and saturation of colors, lightness and convenience. They look great in the apartment and warm well, almost do not roll down, do not cause allergies and are quite easy to care for. Among the disadvantages of synthetic blankets are poor breathability (which can make them too hot underneath), as well as susceptibility to the accumulation of static electricity.
One of the cheapest (both synthetic and natural) blankets are acrylic. They are pleasant to the touch, decorated with a bright, perfectly dyed pattern. In addition, acrylic blankets are durable, lightweight, soft and warm. They have antibacterial and anti-allergic properties, do not attract dust, and are easy to wash in the washing machine.
Fleece blankets are already a little more expensive than acrylic ones, but at the same time they have their own advantages. In terms of structure, fleece (based on polyester) resembles wool, it passes air better and absorbs moisture, creates good thermal insulation. Fleece blankets are thin, soft, durable and light, making them convenient to take on the road.
Viscose blankets (and especially chenille ones) are distinguished by their shiny texture and brightness. Viscose is made from cellulose, therefore such models are considered the most natural and environmentally friendly among all synthetic types. Chenille blankets are similar in quality and price to fleece ones, but are more often used for decorating rooms. The main disadvantage is the special requirements for care and handling. Viscose blankets wear out pretty quickly if you sleep under them all the time.
Faux fur blankets
Special mention deserves faux fur blankets, which are now very popular. They create a special atmosphere of luxury and comfort in the house, are pleasant to the touch and do not cause allergies. The main advantages of faux fur blankets are excellent breathability, wear resistance, softness and stylish appearance. The disadvantages are that the models trap dust and become electrified.
Natural blankets attract with their environmental friendliness, breathability and quality. Other advantages and disadvantages depend on the material.
Fur blankets are an expensive and stylish option for decorating a bedroom or living room. They bring a piece of wildlife with them and create a special atmosphere. In a fur plaid, density, brightness and soft pile attract. Disadvantages — decent weight, the ability to cause allergies.
Woolen blankets are the most loved and popular among buyers. They look great in the interior, breathe, absorb moisture, warm and relax (due to the beneficial lanolin contained in animal wool). In addition, wool blankets have amazing self-cleaning abilities and are very durable. The main disadvantages are allergenicity, relatively high cost, demanding care and a small (compared to synthetics) choice of colors and patterns.
Fans of natural materials should pay attention to cotton blankets. Of course, this option is more likely for the warm season. Cotton blankets do not warm very well, but they attract just lightness, thinness, hypoallergenicity, environmental friendliness, wear resistance and ease of care. Manufacturers offer models of a variety of colors and options for weaving threads (textured or smooth). Jacquard is especially popular.
Luxurious summer blankets are also made from natural silk. The material perfectly affects the skin, passes air and retains heat, does not cause allergies. Silk blankets are an exquisite and luxurious decoration for any home.
Another natural and gradually gaining popularity material is bamboo. Bamboo blankets can be fluffy or smooth, do not cause allergies, do not accumulate static electricity, and can be easily machine washed.
Mixed (combined) blankets are made from several materials at once, complementing and improving each other. For example, wool with cotton or silk is warmer than cotton blankets and softer than pure wool. A plaid made of natural silk will be more practical and affordable mixed with cotton and, for example, modal.
The addition of synthetic fibers, acrylic and polyester (polyamide), increases the service life and wear resistance of the blanket. So a mohair blanket would not last long without the addition of polyamide. Thanks to the addition of a small amount of synthetics (acrylic, polyester, viscose) to the wool, the blanket becomes not only softer and more pleasant to the touch, but also dyed in brighter colors and does not lose shape after washing and drying.
In the popular combination of cotton and acrylic, acrylic makes the blanket warmer, stronger and more practical — it washes easier and dries faster. And cotton improves the hygroscopicity and breathable qualities of such a blanket.
Adding viscose to cotton makes the fabric more silky, but it remains as strong as cotton.
Now you know all about blankets. And you can safely proceed to the choice of a blanket, the purchase of which will bring only joy, warmth, comfort and beauty to your home.